Shaunie O’Neal talks ‘Basketball Wives’ Season 5: ‘It’s extremely emotional’

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Get ready for Season 5 of VH1's 'Basketball Wives,' which premieres next month. The show, which consistently captures the attentions of millions of viewers, is back after a one year hiatus. Shaunie O'Neal, the show's executive producer, caught up with TheGrio.com's Chris Witherspoon at the 2013 Essence Fest in New Orleans.

Get ready because the premiere of season 5 of Basketball Wives is just weeks away.

The VH1 show, which consistently captures the attention of millions of viewers, is back after a 1 year hiatus.

Shaunie O’Neal, the executive producer of Basketball Wives was candid about some of the scenarios that played out in previous seasons of the show, “It was crazy. Let’s be honest, it was crazy,” she told theGrio.com during an interview at the Essence Festival.

This season, O’Neal said the ladies of Basketball Wives, including returning cast members Evelyn Lozada, Tami Roman, Suzie Ketcham, and newcomer Tasha Marbury (wife of Stephon Marbury), will tell a more uplifting narrative than before.

“You’ll see a lot of growth. Just filming this season I felt the growth,” O’Neal said . “Sometimes I’d look at the ladies and be like ‘I’m so proud of you. You handled that so well.’ This is like a mirror. We’ve been able to look at ourselves for four seasons, and now going into the fifth, it’s like ‘I gotta do better.’”

“I’m a mom of two girls. And my daughters see me… I never want to show them anything that I wouldn’t want them to represent as a black woman. I can’t control what everyone else does, I can’t control anybody else’s behavior, but I can control mine.”

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July 4, 2012, Lozada wed Chad Ochocinco in a lavish wedding, which two of her BBW co-stars attended. Forty-one days later Lozada’s fairytale marriage ended in divorce after the couple got into a physical altercation where Johnson head-butted Lozada.

O’neal told theGrio’s Chris Witherspoon that she felt “helpless” watching Lozada cope as a victim of domestic violence.

“I really didn’t know what to say. I really did feel helpless in advice,” O’Neal said. “All I could be was a shoulder to cry on.”

“It was rough. It’s a whole lot of crying. I tease her now when we talk, like, ‘I stopped counting how many times you cried this season, and how many times you made me almost cry.’ A lot of it was us hearing some things for the first time. She let’s go a lot on the show, because it was so new when we were filming. It’s very emotional… it’s extremely emotional.”

Season 5 of Basketball Wives premieres on VH1 Monday, August 19th at 10PM ET/PT.